[MOVIE REVIEW]‘Matrix Revolutions’: Root for the machinesDays after seeing it, lines from “The Matrix Revolutions” still sparkle in the memory:
“We know what has to be done.”
“We should return to The Oracle. She’ll tell us what to do.”
“It is my business to know.”
“He knows what he’s doing.”
Read the above aloud in the mirror, wearing a black leather trenchoat and a grim expression, and you’ve had half the experience of seeing “The Matrix Revolutions.” All you’ve missed are the special effects, which are nothing you haven’t seen done better (in “The Matrix,” for instance).
Has any filmmaker ever gotten as boring as fast as the Wachowski brothers? “The Matrix” was the most imaginative action movie in ages. Then, last May, the writing-directing siblings Andy and Larry followed up with “The Matrix Reloaded,” to which “Revolutions” is itself a follow-up.
Not long into “Reloaded,” there was an orgy scene, complete with tribal drums, in which everybody kept their clothes on, and you thought, for what wouldn’t be the last time: Is it me? It wasn’t you. It was the Wachowski brothers.
It only got worse after the orgy. Looking back, you’d swear “Reloaded” was nothing but cryptic, endless conversations about the nature of reality, among mysterious characters called The Oracle and The Architect and The Frenchman and possibly The Barista, I’m not sure. There was a big, splashy freeway chase scene, but the one in “Bad Boys II” was three times as good.
“Revolutions” is less irritating than “Reloaded,” but it’s just as dead. There’s less philosophizing and more Hollywood-blockbusterizing. The underground city of Zion is under attack ― I’m sorry to have to go into this at all ― from the machines that have enslaved humanity, so there are big battle scenes. These could probably be replaced with big battle scenes from any of two dozen other sci-fi blockbusters and it would be a while before anybody noticed.
The struggle between Neo (Keanu Reeves) and Agent Smith (Hugo Weaving) comes to a head, as does the imperiled love of Neo and Trinity (Carrie-Anne Moss), mostly in terse declarative sentences. One irony in these bloated “Matrix” sequels is that the characters who are supposed to be manifestations of computer programs ― Agent Smith, The Oracle ― have more personality than any of the alleged human beings. If you’re going to stretch one story over two movies (“Reloaded” ended with a “to be continued”), it’s only courteous to give the audience a reason to care about what’s going on. If the last city on earth turns out to be populated by people who talk in portentous monotones all the time, what difference does it make whether the machines get them or not?
“The Matrix Revolutions”
Action / English
by David Moll